|A Princess' Reflection|
Princess Aaricia couldn’t recognise the girl in her reflection when she looked in the mirror, and she always had trouble accepting this. That was until her reflection matched who she was inside.
Please noted that this is a One Shot. There will be NO chapters.
A Princess' ReflectionEdit
Sparrow tapped his fingers impatiently on the side of his throne looking very displeased. The entire Royal Court had assembled to see who his fifteen year old daughter, Princess Aaricia, would be betroved to. Sparrow wanted to make sure that Aaricia would be provided for instead of having his son, Prince Logan, looking after her while he ruled the kingdom after Sparrow’s passing.
Now, the reason the King was displeased was because Aaricia was nowhere in sight, as usual. Logan was there, sitting to his left, and even his friend’s, Sir Walter Beck and Major Swift, had managed to make time to be there, so why couldn’t Aaricia get there on time too?
In the end, he called for the butler, Jasper, to find his daughter and bring her to Court.
Jasper, not wanting the King to become even more displeased, immediately went in search for Aaricia. He couldn’t understand why she wasn’t there. After all, he had informed her that it was very important that she arrived in Court on time and looking well-presented when he got her ready that morning.
Sighing, Jasper checked her bedroom, the library, the kitchen, the dining hall and the gardens, before heading for the stables. When he got there, he groaned as he saw Aaricia inside throwing horse dung at some stable hands her age. They were throwing it right back at her. All the teenagers were laughing, not that Jasper could see anything funny or hygienic about what they were doing.
‘Princess Aaricia!’ he said angrily, coming to a halt at the stable door.
‘Oh, hi, Jasper!’ Aaricia greeted brightly. ‘Do you wanna join us?’
‘That’s “want to join us” not “wanna”,’ Jasper corrected automatically, ‘and no, I do not wish to join you in your unhygienic game. In fact, you should not be participating in such a pass time. You are a princess!’
Aaricia dropped the ball of dung she was holding.
‘On top of that, I have been looking everywhere for you!’ Jasper continued to scold. ‘Have you already forgotten where you are supposed to be?’
Aaricia looked at him blankly, before her eyes widened dramatically and gasped.
‘Oh no, the Court assembly!’ she cried, running off with Jasper right behind her. ‘I’m running so late! I bet Father’s furious!’
‘That’s one way to describe your father’s feelings,’ said Jasper, ‘but he’ll be even more displeased if you turned up looking like that!’ he added, when he noticed Aaricia wasn’t heading for her bedroom.
‘I look fine, Jasper,’ she said assuring. ‘Besides, no one’s going to be paying me any heed.’
‘I must disagree with you on that one, madam,’ said Jasper. ‘Now, I must insist that you come with me to get cleaned up.’
‘You worry too much!’ Aaricia laughed, before entering the throne room where the Court had assembled.
The moment Albion’s Princess entered the throne room, all heads turned to stare at her. Many openly stared disdainfully at her appearance, while others politely hid their distain. People, like Walter and Logan, groaned and closed their eyes, knowing that her appearance would surely upset the King, though others looked at her completely shocked. Major Swift was one of these people. Sparrow, on the other hand, was burning holes in his daughter’s face as he took in her appearance.
Aaricia’s brand new, expensive, one of a kind dress was ripped and covered in dung, as was her face, silk gloves and shoes. Her hair also had dung in it, not to mention straw, making it look like she had a bird’s nest on her head. If anything she looked like a poor stable hand rather than a princess. She smelt like one too, Sparrow noted as she took her seat on his right.
‘I apologise for my daughter’s lateness and I’m sure she’s got a very good reason for the way she looks,’ Sparrow apologised to the Court as he tried to hide his anger.
Why couldn’t Aaricia be more like her brother who was always on time and properly dressed? He was grateful Aaricia wasn’t next in line for the throne. He was sure that she would run the kingdom into the ground.
‘As you all know, I have called this Court to session to introduce the young man I have selected to wed Princess Aaricia when she comes of age,’ Sparrow continued, making Aaricia groan. She did not approve of this arranged marriage. She wanted to fall in love, not just be thrown together with someone she didn’t know. Unfortunately, Sparrow didn’t share her view on the matter.
‘It is my great pleasure to introduce Elliot, the youngest son of one of my friends,’ Sparrow concluded.
The Court applauded politely when a well-dressed, sixteen year old boy, with brown hair and eyes entered the throne room. Aaricia grudgingly looked up at the man she would be spending the rest of her life with and gasped. She knew him. In fact, she had met him yesterday when he stopped a noble boy from kissing her.
Aaricia stood in the royal gardens, admiring the sunset, when a noble’s son, Percy, appeared by her side.
‘It’s beautiful, isn’t it?’ she commented absently.
‘Just like you,’ Percy replied, not even bothering to look at the sunset. His eyes were focused entirely on Aaricia.
‘Nothing is as beautiful as a sunset,’ Aaricia replied softly, ‘for nothing is as perfect.’
‘You’re lips look pretty perfect to me,’ Percy purred, leaning forward to kiss her.
Aaricia pushed him away.
‘What do you think you’re doing?’ she snapped.
‘What does it look like?’ He lent in to kiss her again.
Aaricia and Percy turned to see a sixteen year old boy with brown hair walking hotly towards Percy.
‘You have insulted this maiden’s honour!’ the boy declared. ‘Now leave her alone!’
‘Shove off!’ Percy snapped. ‘This doesn’t concern you.’
‘I shall not allow you to kiss her if she doesn’t want you to,’ the boy said stubbornly.
Growling, Percy punched him in the mouth, busting the boy’s lower lip. He then fell back and stared stupidly up at the Princess. She had punched him in the side of the head.
‘Get out of here, Percy, otherwise I’ll tell Logan what you just tried to do!’ she threatened.
Percy immediately took off. It was common knowledge of how protective Logan was of his little sister.
Once he was out of sight, Aaricia turned to the boy, who was touching his busted lip.
‘Here,’ she said, handing him her handkerchief. ‘Use this to stop bleeding.’
‘Oh, I couldn’t.’
‘I insist. It’s the least I can do for your help.’
‘Thank you,’ he said, accepting the handkerchief. ‘You are too sweet.’
‘Only to those I like,’ Aaricia replied, before leaning forward and kissing his cheek. She then walked off smiling.
‘It’s a pleasure to see you again, Princess,’ Elliot said with a bow, interrupting Aaricia’s flashback.
‘I am delighted to see you again, too,’ Aaricia replied sincerely, smiling at him. He really was quite cute. ‘How’s your lip?’
‘It’s much better, you highness.’
‘That’s good to hear.’
Sparrow then had a few words with the boy, before addressing the Court and dismissing them. Eventually only Sparrow, Logan, Aaricia, Walter and Jasper remained. With the crowd gone, Sparrow turned furiously to Aaricia.
‘Care to explain to me why you were two hours late?’ he growled. ‘Not to mention looking like a poor dung merchant’s daughter.’
‘I was hanging out in the stables, with the stable hands, and lost track of time is all,’ replied Aaricia.
‘What did you do, rolling around in the stables?’
‘Then how did you get this?’
‘We were having a dung fight.’
‘Charming,’ Logan said sarcastically.
Aaricia stuck her tongue immaturely out at him.
‘Don’t stick your tongue out at your brother!’ Sparrow scolded. ‘It is rude and very un-princess like. It’s time you grow up! You are a princess so you better start acting like one! Princesses are quiet, graceful, polite, delicate, refined and punctual! So far you are none of those things! So you better get your act together!’
Sparrow then stormed out of the throne room with Walter hot on his heels. Logan followed moments later after a hesitant glance at his sister.
Aaricia huffed and crossed her arms angrily.
‘There is no use sulking, Aaricia,’ Jasper said softly. ‘Come now, let’s get you all cleaned up.’
Sighing, Aaricia followed Jasper back to her room where he had a maid help her bathe and dress properly again.
‘Now you look like a real princess,’ Jasper commented once she was dressed.
Aaricia was now wearing a light pink dress with her light brown hair curled and pulled back with a pink bow.
‘I’m going to speak to Father,’ she informed Jasper.
‘Do you think that is wise, ma’am?’ Jasper enquired. ‘Don’t think it would be best to let him cool down?’
‘No, I need to speak with him!’ Aaricia said firmly, before leaving her room and heading for the War Room where she knew Sparrow would be.
As she approached the War Room, her father’s angry voice met her ears. The War Room doors weren’t closed properly.
‘I don’t know where I went wrong!’ Sparrow ranted to Walter, while Logan awkwardly sat in the background. He was learning how to run the kingdom by spending time with his father. ‘Logan never gave me any trouble and Aaricia’s mother was nothing like her!’
‘Sparrow, when are you going to see that Aaricia is like you?’ Walter asked patiently.
‘She’s nothing like me!’ Sparrow replied fiercely. ‘She’s a princess and it’s about time she acts like one. Her mother would turn in her grave if she saw how Aaricia has turned out –‘
‘Aaricia,’ Logan said suddenly, noticing the tearful Aaricia standing at the door.
Sparrow and Walter looked around and stared at the upset Aaricia.
Father and daughter stared at each other. Aaricia’s tearful blue eyes met her father’s cold dark brown eyes, and all she saw was disappointment. She saw that if she was to continue to truly be herself she would break her father’s heart.
Upset beyond reason, Aaricia ran off with Logan chasing after her. He found her looking at her reflection in her mirror glumly.
‘You know, I have no idea who that girl is staring back at me,’ she told him quietly when he stopped next to her. ‘Father hates me, doesn’t he?’
‘No, he doesn’t,’ Logan replied gently. ‘He’s just a little stressed out at the moment.’
‘Don’t make excuses for him!’ she snapped suddenly. ‘Why can’t he except that I’m not a perfect princess… or daughter? Do you think I’ll ever be a perfect princess?’
‘If you try hard enough –‘
‘I have tried! I’ve tried hiding who I am, but I can’t.’ She then sighed sadly. ‘Sometimes I think I’m not meant to play this part. Heck, my own reflection is someone I don’t know.’
‘One day you will,’ Logan said wisely, wiping away her tears.
'But when will that happen?' Aaricia demanded desperately.
'I will happen when you finally blossom into the woman I know you will someday be,' Logan replied confidently, and he was right.
Many years later, the day after the Crawler's defeat, Aaricia stood in front of her full length mirror as she prepared herself for Walter's funeral. As she stared at her reflection she felt a pair of arms wrap around her waist. She smiled as Elliot kissed her cheek before gazing lovingly at her reflection in the mirror.
'You know what, the reflection in this mirror is how I saw a young maiden many years ago as she prevented a boy from kissing her,' he murmured to her. 'Only then, that reflection was hidden within.'
With one last kiss, he headed for the kitchens.
Aaricia smiled. Elliot was right. Her reflection did now match who she was inside. She now looked like the confident, caring Hero she had been from the beginning.
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